Trump aide: White House interviewing candidates to replace Moore, Cain for Fed

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President Trump’s top economic adviser said Tuesday that the White House is interviewing candidates that could potentially replace Stephen Moore and Herman Cain as the president’s picks for the Federal Reserve board.

Larry Kudlow, director of the White House National Economic Council, told reporters that Trump and his top aides still support Moore and Cain for the central bank, but are speaking with several alternative picks as well.

{mosads}“We’re talking to a number of candidates. We always do,” Kudlow said. “Stephen Moore is in the process. We support him. We support Herman Cain. We’ll just let things play out in the vetting.”

Kudlow’s remarks come days after a handful of GOP senators all but doomed Cain’s potential Fed nomination and Moore faces increasing scrutiny of his pending appointment to the central bank.

Trump said in March he would nominate Moore to one of two vacant spots on the Fed board, and announced earlier this month he would appoint Cain to the other.

The president has not formally nominated either pick, and top Trump aides say both candidates are contingent on clearing the White House vetting process.

Moore, a former Trump campaign adviser and conservative economist, has been criticized across the political spectrum for his close ties to Trump, controversial commentary and past economic predictions.

Republican lawmakers have been receptive to Moore, but several GOP moderates have expressed qualms about his fierce criticism of the Fed and calls to fire most of the central bank’s officials.

Cain provoked deeper concerns from Republican lawmakers because of the four allegations of sexual harassment that helped derail his 2012 GOP presidential bid. He has denied the claims, but reached financial settlements with two of his accusers.

Cain has reportedly considered declining Trump’s pending nomination after several GOP senators announced last week they would vote against his confirmation. The opposition of four of the Senate’s 53 Republicans means Cain would need the unlikely support of at least one Democratic senator.

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who has bucked his party to support several of Trump’s nominees, said last week he too would vote against Cain.

Kudlow renewed the White House’s support for Cain on Tuesday and said it would be the potential nominee’s call whether to pull out of consideration.

“I think at the end of the day, it will probably be up to Herman Cain to stay in that process or not,” Kudlow said. “As far as we’re concerned, he’s still in that process and it’s proceeding in an orderly way.”

Tags Donald Trump Herman Cain Joe Manchin Larry Kudlow Stephen Moore

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